Title: The Marriage Game
Author: Sara Desai
Series: The Marriage Game #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Narrator: Soneela Nankani
Length: 12 hours (338 pages)
Publisher: Berkley; Penguin Audio
Release Date: June 9, 2020
Content Warnings: domestic abuse, emotional abuse, infidelity, toxic relationship, medical trauma
A high stakes wager pits an aspiring entrepreneur against a ruthless CEO in this sexy romantic comedy.
After her life falls apart, recruitment consultant Layla Patel returns home to her family in San Francisco. But in the eyes of her father, who runs a Michelin starred restaurant, she can do no wrong. He would do anything to see her smile again. With the best intentions in mind, he offers her the office upstairs to start her new business and creates a profile on an online dating site to find her a man. She doesn’t know he’s arranged a series of blind dates until the first one comes knocking on her door…
As CEO of a corporate downsizing company Sam Mehta is more used to conflict than calm. In search of a quiet new office, he finds the perfect space above a cozy Indian restaurant that smells like home. But when communication goes awry, he’s forced to share his space with the owner’s beautiful yet infuriating daughter Layla, her crazy family, and a parade of hopeful suitors, all of whom threaten to disrupt his carefully ordered life.
As they face off in close quarters, the sarcasm and sparks fly. But when the battle for the office becomes a battle of the heart, Sam and Layla have to decide if this is love or just a game.
This is a very enjoyable rom com. The enemies to lovers angst is top notch, and Layla and Sam had amazing chemistry. I love how central Indian culture and family dynamics are to this story. I also appreciate how this rom com doesn’t shy away from serious topics like medical trauma and domestic abuse.
My biggest complaint is that sometimes the comedy seemed *too* over the top. Most of the blind dates and “villains” in the story had all the depth of a cartoon character… I kept waiting for Sam’s business partner to start twirling his mustache. I also thought the ending dragged a bit.
I didn’t like this as much as The Dating Plan, but I had fun listening to this audiobook!